The Health Benefits of Hydrogen Water (and the Statistics Behind It)
Hydrogen water, which is water infused with hydrogen gas, is becoming more popular as a way to naturally boost your health, but what proof is there? In this article, we will review just some of the data available on what hydrogen water can do to benefit your health.
The role of molecular hydrogen in medicine and science has evolved over the centuries as research continues to bring about new information about its benefits and uses. In more recent decades, researchers have found that hydrogen gas offers a host of medicinal benefits that can support the body’s natural defenses against disease and illness. While the “how” of it all is still being researched, scientists have discovered “what” hydrogen can do. And as of February 2021, we have over 1,000 primary research reports that help us know just what hydrogen can do for our health. Curious what some of these studies say? Check out some of the findings, specifically those pertaining to hydrogen’s most well-known benefits and how you can get those benefits by drinking hydrogen water.
Studies show that molecular hydrogen can help support a healthy gut, and with intestinal microbiota comprising of more than 75% of your body’s immune system, it is extremely important that you maintain healthy gut flora. (1) A great way to help support a healthy gut is with hydrogen, as supported in several studies.
Hydrogen-Enriched Water Reduces Acid Reflux by up to 38%
A study from 2018 tested whether electrolyzed reduced water, which is rich in molecular hydrogen, could help improve symptoms and oxidative stress associated with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). (2) Patients drank 1.5 mL of hydrogen-enriched water for three months in comparison to a control group that received tap water. The results were promising:
- Patients in the group that received hydrogen-infused water experienced an increase in their biological antioxidant potential test, with final readings of 1796.7 ± 467.2 compared to 78.1 ± 14.3 in the control group and a baseline of 855.1 ± 444.9. With a higher antioxidant potential, patients can more easily support their body’s efforts to reduce oxidative stress.
- Patients who received hydrogen-infused water also experienced a decrease in nitric oxide levels, with final calculations reading 41.1 ± 14.9 compared to a baseline of 64.2 ± 11.3. This is significant because nitric oxide plays an important role in the transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxation (TLESR), which is the most common cause of acid reflux. (3, 4)
- Overall, 23.3% of patients in the hydrogen-infused water group fell within the optimal range for their antioxidant barrier, and 53.5% had an optimal value for plasmatic oxidative stress.
Hydrogen-Enriched Water May Reduce Gastric Injury to Just 2.1% Erosion
This 2014 study focused on identifying how much hydrogen-rich alkaline electrolyzed water would be sufficient to aid in an aspirin-induced intestinal injury. (5) In this study, researchers divided rats into seven groups and gave them hydrogen-rich water at different pH and ppm levels. After two weeks, the rats were injected with 200 mg of aspirin and tested for a correlation between hydrogen dosage and how the rats reacted to the aspirin-induced injury. Here’s what they found:
- For rats who consumed hydrogen-enriched water at the same pH level (8.5), the amount of hydrogen in the water correlated with greater inhibition of damage in the gut. For the group that had water with 0.84 ppm of hydrogen, rats experienced only 2.1% of erosion, whereas the group with water with 0.22 ppm of hydrogen had 13.6% erosion and the group with 0.07 ppm of hydrogen had 38.6% erosion.
- Researchers also measured malondialdehyde (MDA), which is generated from reactive oxidative species (ROS) and is a marker of oxidative stress. The group of rats who consumed water with 0.84 ppm of hydrogen had an MDA reading of 32.6%, whereas rats who consumed water with 0.22 ppm of hydrogen read as 36.8% and those who consumed water with 0.07 ppm of hydrogen read at 61.9%. This shows that molecular hydrogen can help reduce inflammation and other symptoms of oxidative stress and thus ease the severity of gut injury.
OXIDATIVE STRESS AND INFLAMMATION
Oxidative stress and inflammation are major contributors to a variety of health diseases and issues. By helping to reduce both of these symptoms, hydrogen can support your body’s natural efforts to fight off illness and stay healthy.
Hydrogen-Enriched Water Can Reduce Superoxide Production by 27%
In this 2008 study, researchers tested hydrogen’s effect in the brain by providing hydrogen-rich water to mice. (6) After 33 days, they measured superoxide formation in the brain tissue, and their results were promising:
- Mice that were in the hydrogen-rich water group had 27.2% less superoxide than the group that received pure water. Superoxide is a reactive oxygen species, and while it is produced by the immune system to help kill pathogens in the body, an overabundance of superoxide can cause inflammation and other issues. For those who experience too much inflammation, hydrogen-infused water can help slow superoxide production.
Molecular Hydrogen Can Reduce Oxidative Stress in Pulmonary Hypertension by up to 43%
A study done in 2013 explored the potential of hydrogen functioning as an antioxidant on pulmonary hypertension. (7) For this study, they randomly put 48 rats into four different groups, each with monocrotaline (MCT)-induced pulmonary hypertension. Each rat also received different amounts of hydrogen on a regular basis, via oral hydrogen with hydrogen-rich water or receiving a hydrogen saline. These are what their results showed:
- Measurements of 3-nitrotyrosine, a marker of oxidative stress, were lower in both groups who received hydrogen than those who did not. The rats who received hydrogen treatment had a positive rate of 42 ± 8% (oral) and 44 ± 7% (saline), compared to 66 ± 11% for those who did not receive hydrogen. This suggests that hydrogen can help reduce oxidative stress related to pulmonary hypertension.
- Rats who received hydrogen treatment had significantly lower measurements of intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) than those who did not receive hydrogen, with measurements reading a positive rate of 13 ± 3% (oral) and 12 ± 3% (saline). ICAM-1 is increased by a variety of cell types during inflammation, and having lower measurements in both groups who received hydrogen treatment suggests that hydrogen can help lower ICAM-1 responses related to inflammation, particularly in the lungs.
- After treatment was complete, researchers tested inflammatory responses in the lungs of rats involved. Tissue injury scores for the hydrogen groups were 18 ± 6 (oral) and 17 ± 5 (saline), compared to 25 ± 7 in the non-hydrogen group. This shows that tissue injury was more severe in those who did not receive any hydrogen treatment, suggesting that hydrogen can help ease tissue damage related to pulmonary hypertension.
Hydrogen May Increase Cellular Defense Against Oxidative Stress by up to 58%
This 2015 study tested the effect that hydrogen-rich water has on oxidative stress in rats who have traumatic brain injury. (8) In this study, 90 rats were divided into three groups: a sham operating group, a traumatic brain injury group, and a hydrogen-rich water treatment group. After the study was complete, the results showed promising results:
- Researchers tested brain function with the Neurological Severity Score (NSS), which includes 10 different tasks and is designed to “assess the functional status of mice after [traumatic brain injury].” (9) When compared to the traumatic brain injury group, the rats who received hydrogen-rich water had significantly lower NSS scores, reading 9.83 ± 2.32 at 12 hours compared to 13.17 ± 2.71, 7.50 ± 2.07 at 48 hours compared to 11.83 ± 2.14, and 5.50 ± 1.87 at 5 days compared to 10.50 ± 2.43. This suggests that molecular hydrogen can help reduce oxidative damage related to traumatic brain injury.
- Rats in the group with hydrogen-infused water had higher levels of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf2), especially at 24 hours, having a reading of 1.110 ± 0.372 compared to 0.703 ± 0.262 in those who did not receive hydrogen-rich water. Nrf2 plays a key role in cellular defense against “oxidative and electrophilic insults,” and higher levels in the molecular hydrogen treatment group suggest that molecular hydrogen can help defend against oxidative stress in the brain. (10)
Another well-studied benefit of hydrogen gas is improved cognitive function and protecting the brain from impaired function. By supporting proper brain health, hydrogen gas has the potential to help reduce the negative cognitive effects of aging or brain injury.
The focus of this 2013 study was to determine the effects of inhaling hydrogen gas on “cognitive impairment induced by transient cerebral ischemia,” which is a condition commonly known as a ministroke. (11) With 120 rats, researchers randomly created four different groups, where both a sham group and ischemia group received hydrogen treatment. After treatment, researchers measured neuronal damage in the CA1 region (part of the hippocampus); levels of malondialdehyde (MDA), an oxidative stress marker; and more. The results of this study are promising:
- Rats in the hydrogen gas group had an increase in neuronal density in the CA1 region of the brain from 3.3 ± 2.1 cells/mm to 21.7 ± 2.6 cells/mm after receiving hydrogen. This suggests that hydrogen gas can help lower cognitive impairment in those who have ischemia.
- Measured levels of superoxide dismutase (an enzyme that fights against superoxide radicals and provides protection against free radicals) recovered to up to 129.7 ± 14.8 after hydrogen gas treatment. This data suggest that hydrogen gas may help increase protection against free radicals in the brain and the oxidative stress caused by them.
Hydrogen can boost your energy by supporting proper mitochondrial function.
Another common benefit of molecular hydrogen is boosting energy production via the mitochondria. We could all do with some more energy, and there’s no better way than to get it naturally without the caffeine or sugar that fill the majority of today’s energy products. With hydrogen-rich water, you can experience the benefits of greater energy without the crash later. Check out what this study found on how hydrogen-rich water can boost your energy!
Hydrogen-Enriched Water Has Potential to Increase Energy Production by up to 31%
Published in 2018, this study investigated hydrogen’s effect specifically on the antioxidant-coenzyme Q9 (CoQ9), which appears in rodents, fights free radicals, and is part of the ubiquinone coenzyme family. (12) Researchers divided rats into six groups of five rats. Three groups received pure water, and three groups received hydrogen-rich water daily for up to 45 days. Here is what they found:
- After just two days of treatment, rats in the groups with hydrogen-rich water had a 23.3% increase in CoQ9 concentrations in plasma. After 45 days, CoQ9 concentration in plasma increased by 31.3%.
The reason this is significant is because CoQ9 is the dominant form of Coenzyme Q in rodents, and CoQ10 is the dominant form in humans. CoQ10 is an antioxidant and has a main function of transferring electrons and protons from Complex I and Complex II to Complex III in the mitochondrial respiratory chain, a series of complexes that “produce the majority of energy-driven cellular reactions.” (13) When there is a disruption in the mitochondrial respiratory chain, it can lead to a decrease in energy production and an increase in toxic ROS. Because hydrogen-enriched water is shown to increase CoQ9 in rodents, it is assumed that it can also increase CoQ10 in humans, and thus support proper energy production via the mitochondrial respiratory chain.
HYDROGEN GAS: A NATURAL WAY TO BOOST YOUR HEALTH
The studies listed above hardly scratch the surface of the information and data researchers have discovered regarding hydrogen’s role in our health. Hydrogen gas is a simple yet incredible way that you can experience a healthier, happier life. But you don’t have to take our word for it; scientists are proving it! With over 900 studies available and counting, more and more people are discovering just how powerful this tiny molecule is. So get your Echo™ machine today, and create a healthier you with hydrogen-enriched water!